Friday, 23 November 2018

How To Catch A Krampus! @ The Pleasance Theatre

How To Catch A Krampus! @ The Pleasance Theatre

What's a Krampus? According to Central European folklore, it's a horned beast that punishes naughty children at Christmas. It's the anti-Santa, which is fitting for this anti-Christmas show from the drag queens of Sink The Pink.

The story these queens tell is a flimsy one: something about a lost child, a creepy German, and a psychic tasked with rescuing the innocent. Really, it's a loose excuse to put on an outrageous, macabre drag show. Between each of the scenes are hilarious and twisted drag skits: from joke Christmas adverts and dirty Morris dancing, to a mini operetta and more.

It's here that the queens really shine individually, giving the show a riotous feel full of bizarre humour. Ginger Johnson (who also wrote and directed the show) in particular is a brilliant leading lady, who sets the tone with charm and eases us into this spooky narrative, while Mahatma Khandi's opera moment is hilarious and unexpected.

The show is all about taking familiar ideas of panto and putting a twist on them, from riffing on pop songs (there's a particularly saucy version of Rihanna's S&M here from Lavinia Coop), to audience participation, to the traditional Twelve Days of Christmas song given a sadistic twist. The humour throughout is as crude and bawdy as you'd expect from an adult panto, and the horror twist makes this a deliciously different Christmas show.

As a piece of pure theatre it's nonsensical, with a tenuous story and production that's a little rough, though that all fits with the uproarious, hysterical, punk nature of the show. Is it entertaining? You bet your Christmas wig it is.

3/5

Watch: How To Catch A Krampus runs at the Pleasance Theatre until 23rd December.

How To Catch A Krampus! @ The Pleasance Theatre

How To Catch A Krampus! @ The Pleasance Theatre
Photos: Ali Wright